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Dyson – China’s flouting of IP rights risks their expulsion from the WTO

5 December 2011

Sir James Dyson has warned that China’s reputation risks being tarnished in the eyes of foreign investors due to their approach to IP rights.

In advance of this week’s Intellectual Property Office (IPO) symposium, which will be attended by trade representatives from China and the UK (including the UK Minister for IP- Baroness Wilcox), Dyson warned that China faces expulsion from the World Trade Organisation (WTO), the body that enforces global trade rules.

Dyson, a member of the prime minister’s business advisory group, suggests that China is creating an unlevel international playing field which prevents foreign companies enforcing their rights against Chinese infringers by maintaining a patent application process in which Chinese applications are passed in less than a year, compared to five years for foreign businesses.

China’s approach to IP right enforcement is likely to be of increasing interest to UK companies eager to protect their products, should the emerging market continue to pursue rapid economic growth without attempting to monitor domestic infringers.

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